It's evening. The salty air blowing in from the beach makes the candles, despite being guarded by delicate glass holders, flicker in the breeze. Dusk is warm and inviting, the wedding guests are all laughing and chatting over remnants of an exquisite meal, and champagne glasses still well in hand.
I am enjoying a rather aromatic white wine at the Lighthouse Surf & Turf after photographing all day. As I sit and watch the remaining wedding party, I think back on the beautiful ceremony I witnessed earlier in the afternoon.
No beauty shines brighter than a bride on her wedding day. Jelena and Gleb had previously hired me to photograph their engagement session, and I was very glad to hear from them when it came time for their wedding. These two have a vivacious energy that's unmatched. It starts as a little spark and flares up to become a blazing fire. I could not have been happier to be here on their wedding day!
Jelena was quiet and calm that morning, but her shining eyes and shy smile let me know that she was excited for her big day. Her fingers trembled ever so slightly as she gazed at herself in the mirror. As the waves rolled in on the beach, creating a muffled crash that she could barely hear above her fast beating heart, Jelena signalled that she was ready for the ceremony.
And what a gorgeous ceremony it was! I especially loved the part where Jelena and Gleb each poured sand into a heart-shaped vase. The symbolism created a spectacular effect and moved many in the crowd to tears. It was as if they were mixing their feelings for each other into one glowing emotion of love and devotion.
The entire ceremony was performed in Russian, so I did not understand a word of it (I only know the word for 'pancake'), but the tone of the ceremony master's voice was so steady and soft that I felt I knew what she was saying.
Before we knew it, the ceremony was over. A burst of rose petals showered down as the crowd tossed them at Jelena and Gleb. Gleb got so excited that he belted out an exclamation in Russian. Whatever it was, Jelena looked slightly embarrassed at first, but she soon broke out in a wide smile and threw her head back in laughter. It was such a joyful moment!
I wish these two only the best. Hopefully, my Russian will have improved by the next time we meet. It's 'dasvidaniya', for now!
Photography: Martina Hohnjec (Timeless Photography)
Venue: Lighthouse Surf & Turf
Videography: Alive Film Productions